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Midland Met: Government-backed cash secures future of 'super' hospital

By Alex Ross | Sandwell | Health | Published:

Work to finish building the Midland Metropolitan Hospital will start next year after the Government stepped in to save the multi-million project, it was announced today.

Work on the Midland Metropolitan site has stalled since January

Under the agreement with Sandwell and West Birmingham NHS Trust, the Government will provide public funding for the remainder of the building work.

It will be opened by 2022.

Health Minister Steve Barclay said: ““By taking this bold step, we are not only giving patients in Sandwell and west Birmingham world-class NHS facilities on their doorstep but also showing our determination to build an NHS fit for the future – all whilst making sure taxpayers’ money is spent in the best possible way”.

Construction work had begun on the hospital but halted earlier this year when the firm carrying out the work, Carillion, went into liquidation.

After examining all available options, including a replacement contractor, the trust asked the Government to provide public finance for the project.

The Government says it concluded that a one-off funding agreement would be in the best interest of patients and taxpayers.

Sandwell and West Birmingham NHS Trust chief executive, Toby Lewis, said: “This is absolutely fantastic news.

"After a huge amount of work by teams across Whitehall and the Trust, and with the voices of local residents, clinicians, and stakeholders having been being clearly heard, we are delighted that we now have a definitive publicly financed plan.

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“Midland Met will open in 2022, and by then our partnerships with local GPs, schools and care homes will be even deeper and more integrated than today.

"This is a vote of confidence in our publicly financed construction plan, and in our STP strategy as a whole. The new hospital is about improving the outcomes of patient care and about regeneration and public health. We need to finish the job and seize the benefits.”

West Midlands Mayor Andy Street said: “The collapse of Carillion left everybody involved in this vital project in a hugely challenging situation with no easy solutions. That we have successfully found a way forward is testament to the work of the trust, Government and local partners."

Alex Ross

By Alex Ross
Investigations Editor - @alexross_star

Investigations Editor at the Express & Star. Everyone has a story - tell me yours.

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